Media research at Brighton critically engages with some of the most exciting and pressing issues of our time, exploring the effects of changes in media technologies and practices upon everyday life, the cultural and creative economy, politics, social well-being and identity. Working at the local, national and global level, our research and knowledge-exchange activities engage us with diverse businesses, communities and policy actors including media, publishers, digital companies, community groups and NGOs. Encouraging both disciplinary and transdisciplinary approaches, our research expertise encompasses the following areas:
Digital culture & practice
Digital media is at the forefront of different forms of change within societies –political, economic and cultural. Our expertise relates to industry developments and practices, as well as community activism in local and global contexts, and changes in the nature of audiences and their engagements.
In an era of ‘big data’, we explore how datafication impacts upon everyday life and notions of surveillance, and its contribution to future cities through intelligent/sustainable transport. We also pay attention to emerging technologies and social change, exploring locative media, science and technology, digital health, digital citizenship, policy, governance and education, with a focus upon questions of exclusion, inclusion, and identity formation.
We are part of the Digital Catapult Centre Brighton, creating links between universities and business, and focusing on projects that encourage innovation and value for real-time and location-based data – known as the Internet of Place.
The role of digital media in political, social and environmental activism, and in the creation of online/offline communities are also a focus of our research. The nature of audiences and their engagements with digital media are explored through podcasting, news, and feminist and inclusion oriented approaches to gaming cultures. In terms of methodologies and approaches, we pay close attention to ethnography and everyday life, feminist, LGBT and queer theories, digital and data culture, and questions of ageing, disability, class, gender and sexuality.
Screen, image & visual culture
Visual media is central to contemporary media culture and social practice. At the forefront of visual based research and practice, we have expertise in Film and TV, Popular Culture and Photography, paying close attention to aspects of cultural memory, identity and power.
The university hosts the prestigious annual CINECITY Film Festival with our partners, the Duke of York’s Picture House and Screen Archive South East, a public sector moving image archive serving the South East of England, and based within media at the University of Brighton.
In our Film and Screen research we focus upon questions of production, distribution, representation, exhibition and consumption. Examining British TV/film, American media industries and Hollywood film, as well as Artists' cinema/moving image and video art, we have expertise in globalization and imperialism, film and philosophy, family/youth entertainment, Gothic and science fiction, and cinema exhibition and festivals.
In popular media culture we focus our attention upon the politics of representation, consumer culture and identity across a variety of media and cultural platforms to examine notions of celebrity, female pleasure and cultural heritage. Interrogating visual research methods and visual practices, we also examine the role of the visual in environmental and climate change communication and engagement.
In photography, our research expertise and practice encompasses artistic, expressive and documentary forms. We capture the changing nature, regeneration and transformation of places through a focus upon history, heritage and public memory.
Sound & spatial practice
We approach sound as an acoustic, material, spatial and representational practice. Ranging from popular music studies, and film/documentary music, to sonic art, and sound and mobility studies, we interrogate and intervene within sonic representations and practices.
Centres of Research and Enterprise Excellence
Centres of Research and Enterprise Excellence (COREs) produce outstanding, internationally-excellent research and enterprise. COREs transcend subject and discipline boundaries and address the most pressing global issues; they allow us to articulate our intellectual and research leadership and develop and maintain strategic relationships with key stakeholders. Brighton’s media research can be seen in the following COREs.